As we head full steam into the later stages of the recruiting wars, I sit here at my computer with a level 5 migraine, a pregnant wife, and bracing for a blizzard- that just doesn't want to start. There are many, many topics to cover and I'm sure we have many, many opinions on these topics, but right now I have just a few random points to put out there. Welcome to the discussion. And if you don't think that this post is a random thing of beauty, then what is that picture of Tom Lopienski doing on the left hand side? Hmm? That's what I thought...
Recruiting is at a fevered pitch right now. As it stands, the Fighting Irish have 17 commitments and are ranked #18 by Scout.com in the recruiting rankings. Not exactly what we are used to, but this class has the same feel as the 2006 class. That class was ranked 5th in the team rankings and had a whopping 28 players. But, since then the 2006 class has lost 10 players due to transfers, medicals, and being a douche bag. So, as long as the 2009 class stays their 3 or 4 years, they should collectively be as good or even better than the 2006 class.
Don't jump over the edge just yet. Weis is not done with the 2009 class by any stretch of the imagination. Along with some current offers that the staff has been actively pursuing they are looking at offering more kids as well, and have done so already. The current offer list has these recruits offered that are looking at Notre Dame and the Irish have at least a shot at gaining a commitment:
- Manti Te'o (LB) 5*****
- Jelani Jenkins (LB) 5*****
- Tyler Gaffney (FB) 4****
- Jawanza Starling (S) 4****
- Michael Buchanan (DE) 3***
- Marlon Pollard (CB) 4**** Committed to UCLA
- Byron Moore (S) 4**** Committed to U$C
There are, of course, other prospects that Notre Dame has offered that are uncommitted, but these are the ones that they still have a shot with signing. Pollard, although a recent decommitment from the Irish, is still being heavily pursued by the Irish. It ain't over yet, but is probably unlikely that Pollard changes his mind again- although I've seen weirder. The other committed prospect is Byron Moore, who most people on the inside think that his commitment to U$C is very soft. Buchanan is the most recent offer and I suspect that ND may have a couple more in mind before the end of next week. Just a hunch. I think Notre Dame will land 2 or 3 more prospects before it is all over with.
The coaching search is still quiet. No new hires have been made for any of the coaching vacancies. This is a slow and excruciating process for Irish fans, but one that has to take its course. A lot of names have been thrown out, but nothing of real substance has really been put out in front just yet. Also, there has been reports of Latina being fired, but that has been denied by the University. And when in the hell is Weis going to show Mendoza the line to the unemployment office? The Mendoza and Latina jobs ( Strength and Offensive line jobs) are probably the two that most need a change. Notre Dame passes the eye test with their lineman... until some guy that weighs 40 pounds less blasts them on their ass.
I don't expect anything to surface too soon, but I'm not sure if that is good news or bad news. The fact remains that these staff assignments are of vital importance and if Notre Dame is going to take that next step as an improving team, these hires need to be of a first class nature. Weis knows this and I am sure he is doing all that he can to make the best possible hires from a pool of candidates that meets the criteria that both he and the administration have set out in front of them. Tenuta was a late hire last year, and I'm pretty sure that he has worked out well for the Irish- and for wildlife everywhere.
A few notes on the enemy. A mini-Link-O-Rama if you will...
- Boston College has hired defensive coordinator Frank Spaziani as it's new head coach after Jagazwieuiosfj;l was caught looking in a peephole in the NFL locker room.
- Taylor Mays is staying put at Southern Cal. Mark Sanchez is still undecided, but one of Sanchez's top targets , Vidal Hazelton, is transferring to Cincinnati.
- LeSean McCoy is declaring for the NFL Draft and leaving Pittsburgh to fend for itself.
- Jim Harbaugh is staying at Stanford. Lots of rumors were swirling about Harbaugh interviewing for NFL jobs. They obviously didn't want him.
- And I'm positive that you already saw that U$C's offensive coordinator, Steve Sarkisian is now the head coach at Washington, and he hired U$C's defensive coordinator Nick Holt to do the same job at Washington as well. Either USC gets worse or Washington gets better... or neither.
Subway Domer News...
Despite pleas to my employer that National Signing Day is in all actuality a national holiday and worthy of a paid holiday, they have made no effort to pay me to stay at home to check message boards for information on the stream of Letters of Intent that will be coming over the fax machines at Notre Dame. So, it remains to be seen if I will be posting on that glorious day. If i do, I will have a Live Blog up and running for you to vent and boast.
Shortly after that beautiful holiday, I will post the Subway Domer Recruiting Spectacular: 2009. And by shortly, I mean a day or two or three after. Please take the time to check it out as I try hard not to swear. Here are the links to the 2007 & 2008 versions.
Then kids, after the Recruiting Spectacular has been out for a few days, I will post my State of Recruiting: 2009. This isn't quite what you may think it is. You have to take it literally. Here are the links to the 2007 & 2008 versions.
This is all subject to me not dieing in this blizzard or my wife not giving birth before February 17th.
Congratulations are in order to OC Domer. That SOB won the Subway Domer Bowl Pick-Em for the 2nd year in a row. Last year he asked me to make a donation at the Grotto in lieu of the T-Shirt prize. Those regular alumni must really like not having to put the word "subway" as a prefix to their alumni status. So what's it going to be this year OC, saint or shirt?